AUGUSTA — The Maine Department of Education is telling school districts to hold off on submitting students’ Social Security numbers to a state database while the department works out a data system error that allowed a school technology director access to restricted information.

The department said Tuesday it is deleting from its data systems student Social Security numbers that have already been submitted and ordering an outside review of the security of its data collection systems.

A technology director for a Maine school district on Friday reported being able to see the Social Security numbers of staff members employed by other Maine school districts.

State education officials say they immediately located the problem and addressed it, restricting access to the staff members’ Social Security information.

“We deeply appreciate that this technology director immediately recognized the issue and called the department to inform us of the error, and it was resolved immediately,” Education Commissioner Angela Faherty said in a statement.

The data flap comes as school districts are for the first time collecting students’ Social Security numbers to add to a longitudinal database intended to help policymakers track students’ progress throughout school and college and into the workplace.